Fernando Alonso, Photo courtesy of Aston Martin F1 Team

F1: Alonso single-lap qualifying idea panned

Fernando Alonso feels the current F1 qualifying system is obsolete because of the traffic jams caused by cars going slowly before the final corner.

–by Mark Cipolloni–

“Whatever [the FIA] do, we will find a way to sail that kind of rule.

“They have a very difficult job in terms of managing traffic on street circuits.”

“I have said many times that there is only one way to find a solution which is single-lap qualifying.

“All the other solutions we can test but will never work because we will find a way.

“I think this qualifying format is obsolete. It has been the same for 20-25 years, but the cars are not the same.

“We have hybrid engines [to appease the tree huggers], we have to charge [the battery], we have to cool the tires, so the only way to go forward is single-lap.”

If you think charging of the batteries is an issue today, wait until 2026 when the tree-hugger batteries will be much larger and take longer to charge up.

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Opposing View

Alonso’s idea is horrible.

Tracks such as Singapore ramp up so quickly in speed as the surface cools, those going out first will be totally screwed.

If it begins to rain halfway through the session, those going out after the track is wet, will be screwed.


Q1 is the worst because all 20 cars are out on the track at the same time.

The best solution would be to break Q1 into two sessions of 10 cars each, with the slowest three of each session being eliminated (four slowest being eliminated when the field expands to 22 cars in 2025).

That would reduce Q2 down to 14 cars on track with the slowest 4 then being eliminated for Q3.

Therefore, Q3 would remain 10 cars as it is today, where the traffic of cars backing up is usually not a problem.

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